Sligo Borough (Chap. 71)


edited by A. J. Davis, 1887



 By W. A. B.

transcribed by
Gene Shirey 
THE territory embraced within the present limits of Sligo borough was settled at an early date, but by whom is not definitely known to the writer. The Craigs settled here early, and Richard Reynolds opened a store where A. B. Miller's house now stands. The furnace.being built in 1845, made the furnace bank a lively, village. The furnace used charcoal. It shipped its metal at Callensburg in boats on the Clarion. William Lyon, J. P. Lyon, and other gentlemen of wealth owned the furnace. The company had a store in connection with the furnace and also several farms.

About 1860 or 1861 the Western Union Telegraph Company established an office at this point, and in 1873 the Sligo Branch Railroad was built. During war times, Sligo being a telegraph station, was a central point for gathering news from the field, and many an excited crowd assembled about the store and office in those days.

The Lyon family lived in lordly style, and their houses and grounds, now owned by J. B. Miller, yet remain as monuments of their once proud state. Compared with the usual dwellings of those days, these houses were palaces, while their coachman and servants in attendance gave a southerly air to the surroundings, and even the employees of the store and offices affected to be like their employers. The Lyon family were a genteel people. The workmen respected them as such, and when D. E. Lyon, the oldest son of J. P Lyon, went into the army with Captain Ewing's company, the boys who went with him and their friends felt that a barrier between wealth and labor had been torn away.

The new town of Sligo was laid out by the old furnace company in 1871 Thomas Berrean, sr., built the first house in the new town. The company soon erected a new brick store building, now occupied by Hodil & Company and in 1873 it erected the Sligo Hotel. Other buildings were soon erected among which were the M. E. Church in 1873, and the Presbyterian Church in 1873-4. About the same time the public school-house was erected.

In 1878, on the 20th of September, the borough of Sligo was organized with Dr. J. N. Bech as burgess, and John Anderson, D. C. Low, M. M. Conrad, A. J. Switzer, Conrad Hahn, and George Wagner as council. J. B. Ayres was high constable, and J. M. Craig justice of the peace.

The business houses at present are J. B. Miller & Son, Jacob Hodil, F. C McEwen, J. F. C. Thomas, and George W. Craig in the general store business; N. S. Coulter, drugs and groceries; Conrad Hahn, boots and shoes, and John Hartle, watchmaker.

The blacksmith shops are Low's and Silvis's. M. Anderson and John Shrum have wagon shops. John P. Greer & Son, at the foundation of the new town, dealt extensively in hardware. J. B. Miller's new mill was erected in 1879. In 1874 an Odd Fellows' Lodge was established here, and held its meetings in the brick store. In 1886 the lodge fitted up a room in the Greer building and moved into it. The G. A. R. Post also meets in the same room.

Near the railroad J. B. Miller has a fire-brick factory, where he manufactures and ships a great many fire-brick. These works were built in 1873.

In 1864-5 a well was drilled for oil near the old furnace, and in 1886 another was drilled up stream farther, near the railroad station. No oil was found, but a good vein of gas was struck, which is used for fuel and light. The well was purchased by J. B. Miller, who has laid lines to many of the houses in town.

Rev. J. Mateer was the resident minister of the Presbyterian Church for several years. He was succeeded by Rev. W. J. Wilson, and later by Rev. J. M. McCurdy. The M. E. Church has had the following ministers -. C. C. Hunt, Mr. Shepherd, D. C. Planett, S. J. Garnett, W. A. Baker, L. W. Showers, and Mr. Weldin.

The medical men have been Dr. William Reichard, Dr. Fisher, Dr. J. N. Bech, Dr. McAuley, and Dr. Armstrong.

At the time of Cleveland's election, Mr. jaccb Hodil was postmaster at Sligo post-office. At the beginning of the new administration Mr. Hodil promptly resigned his office. Mr. N. S. Coulter was appointed his successor.

The Sligo Branch Railroad has been used for transporting pig iron, tan bark, hoop poles, iron ore, timber, coal, and stock, all of these commodities being shipped at this point.

One of the oldest industries in the limits of the borough is Craig's woolen factory. In former times this factory wove a great deal, in addition to carding, spinning, and dyeing.

At one time the Atlantic Pipe Line Company shipped oil at this point. Their iron tanks were located on the hill across Licking. The enterprise was soon abandoned and the tanks torn down. Work is now in progress to open a large coal mine here this summer.

As a rule, the citizens of the town are industrious and intelligent, and much more attention is given to education than was formerly done. The town is pleasantly located on the Licking Creek, and embraces quite a large area. Its possibilities are good for a first-class town.

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